Syros & Accommodation

Maria mavrokou
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An island which took me by surprise is Syros, in the Cyclades.. There are other Greek islands which are more popular and so I had spent my time and attention towards those directions. Syros seemed so bland. As if it was always there, waiting for you to see what it really is. Upon arrival I was informed that quite a few people visit Syros and then decide to stay, as if a spell is keeping them there for years. People admitted to having lived 11 years there and not being able to quite remember what exactly made them stay. I myself was caught in that spell for 3 years. I began believing there was something present in the island that one can see only if one is physically there.

Syros (with its 21,507 inhabitants) is only half an hour from Athens by plane and 3 and a half by boat. It has become a favorite destination for Athenians who want to live outside the capital of Greece yet don't want to be completely isolated. As the capital of the Cyclades, Syros has a municipality, a hospital, a police station and thus has all the official foundations a civilian may require. Its centre is Hermoupolis, the city of Hermis (the God facilitating communication) and is a city where cars are not allowed in most places. The town is laid out panoramically right at the shore (also where the port is) and is built like a labyrinth with steps and streets connecting the venetian architecture buildings. The previous capital town was Ano Syros, still posing at the top of the hill, where inhabitants used to hide behind walls from the attacks of Piracy. The neighbouring islands are Tinos, Delos, Mykonos, Paros, Andros and Naxos.

My advice, in order to experience as much of the island as possible, is to stay at Hermoupolis and organise daytrips to the nearby villages and beaches. The place to stay is on Omirou street, which are very conveniently close to both the centre square and the steps up on this street lead to Ano Syros. There are many Rooms To Let on omirou street but a favoriteis En Ermoupoli. Another well reputed hotel near by is Esperance. Syros also has a camping site, at Galissas village which, as a camper I do support, it is a bit of a bother travelling back and forth to the town center (half an hour distance) by bus (passes every hour). If you rent a motorbike then all is well. Galissas also features a crowded mainstream beach and on its left side there is a church Panayia Pakou and a secluded nudist beach just behind the hill. Climb upto the church and then go down the other side of the hill. Before you go up, take the time to drink a pint at a historic pub, called Green Dollars.

Syros was the birthplace of Ferekides, inventor of the first sun clock and teacher of Pythagoras. Location the same, Syros has become a meeting point for musicians, writers, dancers, poets and squat philosophers.


About the Author

Maria mavrokou

Manic tea drinker, creative writer, dedicated photographer and (con) artist. 
Habits: Traveling in disguise, dancing barefoot, cooking with spices, snowboarding on powdered snow, singing in the shower. 
Interests: reading books, free press, food labels, detergent product information..

* Why does everything need a definition? Why must society insist on labels? Why can't we all, as a people, decide that life is about living, and that all this hatred and fear has no place in today's society? And why is that couch talking to me?

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